Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Interview with Cate Price, Author of Going Through the Notions

great escape tour banner large going through the notions640

Welcome, Cate! What was the inspiration for the Deadly Notions Mysteries?
An editor at Penguin had come up with the idea for a sewing-notions-themed series, and they were looking for someone to write it. As it happened, I’d just queried my dream agent with a book I’d written, (a cross between a romance and a murder mystery), and while they didn’t think that that particular book was marketable, they loved my writing style, and thought I would be a good fit.

So, inspired by the guidelines, I wrote the proposal (3 chapters and a synopsis) and Berkley Prime Crime offered a three-book deal based solely on that proposal. In one fell swoop, I signed with my top choice of agents and also ended up with the perfect editor on the planet. Brilliant!

Sometimes a Great Notion sounds like such a charming, quaint shop...is it based on a real location?
There’s no specific shop, but I was thinking of the historic village of Skippack, Pennsylvania, near where I used to live. There are a lot of gift and craft shops, art galleries, and wonderful restaurants housed in nineteenth-century buildings that were homes at one time. The series is set in Bucks County, near New Hope, and Skippack feels like a miniature New Hope to me.

Do you frequent auctions? Do you collect anything in particular?
I do go to auctions, but I probably frequent estate and yard sales more. My heroine, Daisy, says that her car brakes automatically for a yard sale sign, and that’s me, too! Lately I’ve been looking for vintage linens and sewing notions. My editor collects hand-sewn tea towels and antique needlework cases, so I’m always on the lookout for those. And now I’m collecting vintage items as an extra presents in conjunction with the book giveaway.  

What drew you to write a cozy series? What are some of your favorite books/authors?
I love the puzzle aspect of mysteries. I’m a crossword puzzle fan. And I especially like cozies because I’m a chicken. I read at night before bed, and anything too scary would give me bad dreams. My favorite cozy authors are Diane Mott Davidson, Lucy Burdette, Cleo Coyle, M.C. Beaton and especially Janet Evanovich (if she’s considered cozy). Love her.

What is a typical writing day for you?
Well, I work a full-time, demanding job in the corporate world, and I’ve learned that after a long day at the computer, I have trouble convincing myself to sit down and do it again when I get home. I’d rather take the dogs out for a walk, have a glass of wine, or watch American Pickers. So I started getting up at 5 a.m. and writing for a couple of hours before work. It sounds brutal, but once you’re up, and you start mainlining caffeine, it’s not so bad. I quite like it now, actually, because it feels like “found” time. No one else is up and about, it’s quiet, and there are no other distractions. Yes, I’m tired when I get home, but I would be anyway. 

Does Daisy have any pets? Do you?
Daisy is currently looking after her daughter’s puppy, a rescue from the streets of New York. He’s an exuberant retriever mix called Jasper. In spite of his goofy behavior and destructive tendencies toward household items, Daisy can’t help falling for him, especially when he helps uncover a clue to the crime. 

I have two amazing rescue dogs, Dylan and Teddy. There’s nothing I’d rather be doing (apart from writing) than going on long hikes with my best friends. I have a sticker on the back of my car that says “Who rescued who?”

What are you working on now?
I just completed revisions on the second book in the series, A DOLLHOUSE TO DIE FOR, which picks up on the dollhouse that Daisy purchases in the first book at auction. So now I’ll continue working on Book 3, which focuses on antique needlework samplers. I’m having fun researching at the moment, so if anyone has any expertise in that department, please email me! cate@cateprice.com

GoingThroughTheNotions (2)

Book Details:
Genre: Cozy Mystery
Published by: Berkley
Release Date: September 3, 2013
Number of Pages: 304
This is a Brand New Series

A retired schoolteacher—and yes, daughter of a Fitzgerald fan—Daisy Buchanan has found her calling in the village of Millbury, Pennsylvania. While her husband endlessly renovates their old house, Daisy happily presides over Sometimes a Great Notion, a quirky shop that sells sewing bits and bobs, antiques, and jewelry.

Daisy has her eye on an antique dollhouse and a classic Singer Featherweight at the local auction—until her friend and mentor, auctioneer Angus Backstead, is led away in handcuffs. It appears he bashed in the head of a drinking buddy who stole a set of fancy fountain pens. Daisy’s sure the sprightly old-timer couldn’t have done it. But she soon learns Angus had more than a few enemies…including the detective on the case.

As Daisy seeks the truth, she also uncovers some leads: a disgruntled heiress hunting for the pens, two farm boys with a grudge against the deceased and the accused, and a twisted scam that entangled the dead man. But if Daisy can’t stitch together the bidder truth soon, Angus will be going once, going twice…gone forever.

About Cate Price

Cate Price was born in England and came to the U.S. when she was sixteen. She is a regular sight on the streets of her home town walking her two amazing rescue dogs, and enjoys gardening, yard sales, and cooking with friends. Her previous (unpublished) books span the genres of romantic comedy, romantic suspense and murder mysteries, and have finaled in numerous contests, including the prestigious Daphne Du Maurier Award for Excellence in Mystery/Suspense. She is a member of Sisters in Crime and Romance Writers of America.

Writing the first book in the Deadly Notions mystery series proved to be rather an expensive project, because while researching auction houses, she also became addicted to bidding on box lots. She is currently hard at work on the next book in the series, A DOLLHOUSE TO DIE FOR.

Cate loves to connect with readers at her website, http://cateprice.com/ on Facebook at www.facebook.com/catepriceauthor or Goodreads at www.goodreads.com/cateprice

Purchase Links:
Amazon              B & N                   Powell’s Books                   Book Depository

Be sure to leave a comment with your email address, in addition to the tour-wide giveaway below, I have one paperback copy of Going Through the Notions to give away! (US only, ending 9/14)

a Rafflecopter giveaway


maudemaxine@gmail.co, said...

I loved reading about Cate and also her books. She is a new author to me. I would very much love to win her book. Please my name in for a chance. Thanks. Maxie mac262(at)me(dot)com

maudemaxine@gmail.co, said...

Comment for Cate: Cate I'm glad to meet you. Always glad to meet new authors. New to me anyway. Your books sound very interesting and I wish I had them all. Take care. Maxie Anderson mac262(at)me(dot)com

Acemommy said...

This sounds like a great new series!

Unknown said...

Thank you all for the lovely comments, and thanks to Melissa for hosting me on the blog today. Good luck in the giveaways!

dollycas aka Lori said...

Fabulous Post! Thank you for being part of this tour!

Lark @ The Bookwyrm's Hoard said...

Wonderful interview! I've been wanting to read this, and now that I realize it's set near New Hope, I will HAVE to read it. My grandparents had a home there; we used to visit them a lot, so I have fond memories of the town and surrounding area.

Sue said...

I'm always interested in a new series---sounds like a great setting.

Unknown said...

I am fascinated by the idea of publishers suggesting a type of story and then you creative writers running with it and giving it life.

Unknown said...

Lark, you'll have to let me know if it matches your memories :) The town of Millbury, PA is fictional, but there are descriptions of Doylestown and the surrounding area that I hope will ring true!

Unknown said...

I wasn't sure how hard it would be at first, but it really did turn out to be a wonderful meeting of the minds with my editor. Now she says we must have been separated at birth with the way we like so many of the same things! I'm just happy that I brought her concept of the series to life in the way she'd envisioned.

Unknown said...

Enjoyed the interview. Book sounds fantastic. Thank you for the opportunity to participate in this giveaway. Please enter my name in the giveaway. Thank you!
Barbara Thompson

Donna E said...

I'm curious, Cate -- what is your full-time job? I can't imagine finding time to do a full-time job, and taking care of house, family, pets, AND writing. Oh, and going to those yard sales!

Looking forward to this new series.


Karen B said...

This sounds like the beginning of a terrific new series - yah!